Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Optimum Organization... Ear Buds

After reviewing my 2nd grade supply list, I knew I needed to figure out a solution to holding everyone's ear buds for Listen to Reading.  I saw a pin someone about using a bead storage container, so off to Michael's I went today after my almost 6 month checkup for LASIK! (Which was the best thing I ever did!)

I'm linking up to show you this cute and quick organization:

Here is the container I purchase for $2.99 at Michael's! SCORE!!!

Then I whipped up some cute labels to go inside using one of my favorite fonts and some new chevron labels from (they were a great flash freebie!)

Here are the labels. I decided just to cut them out and not laminate. 

After using some hot glue, here is the finished product:  (Quick and Easy!)



One more thing off my long to do list!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Monday Made It... a bunch of planning done! phew!

Hey everyone, I'm linking up with Tara's Monday Made It!  

I didn't get too many "projects" done, but I did accomplish a ton of planning, since I still can't get into my room and unpack!  They haven't even cleaned it yet! I'm starting to freak out a little!

Anyways, I finished my Fairy Tales and Tall Tale Unit for the first 5 weeks of school, along with my first unit in Grammar (Sentences).  Thank goodness for TPT and all of the great people on there! I found so many good things to use, both free (yippee!) and paid!
Here is my Fairy Tale and Tall Tale Unit Binder:

I also repainted my pizza pans to use for Daily 5 this year and then painted some more clothespins to use for my Behavior Clip Chart. I'm excited to use this in my new room. I've used a variety of different behavior systems over the years, and this seems to be a good fit for me.

I got some great retelling sticks from Keeping it Captivating. I decided to use them (shrunk down first) to put behind the glass stones I bought last week. I'm going to have the kids pull one out of a container to practice parts of a story.

Well, that is my Monday Made It! My goal is to try to wrap up my Daily 5 plans for the first few weeks of school and then move on to planning writing.  Our new math series hasn't arrived yet, so I can't really start to plan that yet.

I'm off to visit my parents in North Carolina with my girls on Thursday, by myself, since my husband can't get the time off! And yes, we are driving the 12 hours! Wish me luck! I'll be busy with an interviewing committee Wednesday morning and curriculum planning on Thursday... Crossing my fingers to get a lot done this week!!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Finally adding products to TPT!!

I am finally trying to add some items to my TPT store! It is pretty pathetic. With planning for a new grade and trying to enjoy the summer, I haven't really been creating anything new. I also haven't had the time to put anything up from teaching fourth grade. I have a ton of stuff that just needs to add cover pages and credit pages to and then I could have a bigger store... but enjoying the rest of my summer is first on my list.  

Remember these??  


....I've had a bunch of emails asking for my Daily Math rotation board from Monday Made it.  So it is officially on my TPT store!  If you are interested, head on over here and pick it up!

Monday, July 22, 2013

A Great Monday Made It... Daily Math and a Story Map Board

Happy Monday everyone! I'm so excited for this Monday since I have two great projects to share. I've been trying to plan some curriculum, but am struggling since I can't focus on one subject.  Our district adopted My Math from Houghton Mifflin and the materials and manuals haven't arrived yet. I have a pacing guide and the monthly plans we made as a team last week, plus I've printed and laminated some centers to use during my "Daily 5" or my version of it.  As for ELA, our team is planning to start with Fairy Tales and Tall Tales and then Realistic Fiction for the first marking period.  I found some great units on TPT, but still have to figure out which standards to teach first and get my head wrapped around 2nd grade and all of their standards.  I keep having to remind myself that these are little kiddos, not 4th graders! And don't get me started on our spelling... not even sure where to go with that...

Monday Made It # 1:
Anyways, I made my "Daily 5" math rotation board this week. I was inspired by this blog post by That's So Second Grade (and she has free planning pages too!).  After deciding what would fit in my schedule and me personally, I printed out the choices, rotations, and group numbers and then laminated all of them.  Of course with my awesome laminator! Can you tell I am still in love with it?? (I've also gone through 100 sheets as of today!! oh geez!)

Here is my plan for my "Daily 5", really Daily 2, but we will see.  Each day the kids will do Math by Myself in one of the Rotations, then one other station/rotation. I will have two teacher groups, one in each rotation. I wanted to have a few slots open to pull additional kids, but that will have to wait.  My best teacher friend will be pushing in with me again this year, so maybe she can help pull some kids who need extra support.

Here are the stations/rotations:
Math by Myself
Math with Teacher
Math Technology
Math Writing
Math with Someone

I created a schedule for now, instead of letting the kids choose.  I'm too OCD to let that happen right now. Here is my Daily Math plan.

You can download by clicking the picture or here. Hopefully it is all correct, since my eyes were too tired to check it again. Feel free to let me know if there are any mistakes on it.

I am going to divide by kiddos into 5 groups and use 2 rotations.  Here are some pics before it was all put together.

I then used Velcro to attach them to a poster board, just in case I need to change out the signs.  Here is the final product! I love it!  (sorry, the pics aren't that great... )

Rotation Board: Shows the kids where they will be for the day.  I'll just move the group number each day which will be so much easier than moving all of the options!

Instructions for the station/rotation along with groups.  I'll write what has to be completed in each station.  Then under the group circles, I'll use sticky notes to put my kids in groups, since they will probably change frequently.

Monday Made It # 2:

After trying to plan out my first reading unit, I had remembered seeing "story boards/maps" which you could use for each story you read.  I searched my love "Pinterest" and found a few I liked, but one I fell in love with!  Mrs. Lee's Kindergarten posted a picture of her story map when she read Too Many Pumpkins.  Check it out here.   I wanted to adapt it to fit my room.  So using my color scheme card stock and a thick poster board, my Cricut machine, and of course my laminator!!

Here was my inspiration:
If you have never read Too Many Pumpkins, it's a must read.  So cute!  One of my favorites.  It's great to teach making predictions because most of the pages end with "until...".  We filled in our story map after reading the story.

And here is my finished product!!!

I'll write on the white spaces when I do each story with my 2nd graders and then wipe it off when we are done to start all over with the next one! I am so in love with it!  

What did you do for Monday Made It?

Thursday, July 18, 2013


I was notified that I was the Day One Giveaway from Primarily Speaking and Bright Concepts 4 Teachers!!!

I am so excited since I am getting a bunch of fabulous products to use in my new 2nd grade classroom!! Thanks so much to these awesome ladies and all of the others who donated to their giveaway!!!  Go check them out if you haven't already!!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Spelling and Words Their Way Thoughts...

Yes, I'm posting again today, but our 2nd grade team needs help!

Our team met today and is meeting again tomorrow to do more curriculum planning for the year.  One question came up while planning today, what should we use for spelling??

With the new Common Core changes and not using the basal series anymore specifically, some of my team members are unsure of what to do about spelling.  Since I'm new to 2nd grade, I'm wondering what you all out their use for spelling, since I'm not that much help coming from fourth grade.  If you have used Words Their Way, can you please let me know about it, including how much time it takes you to prep for it.  That was a concern of a few.  Thanks everyone!!

Monday Made it

Yay for Monday Made it with 4th Grade Frolics and only four hours of sleep.  Note the sarcasm!  That should be great to be "well rested" for curriculum planning today with my new team.

I made a quick project this week since I was so busy printing, cutting, laminating, and cutting some more centers out.  13 in all!  I've see this idea on Pinterest and wanted to create my own!  I'm sure my second graders will constantly be asking me questions, so I decided to make a "Ask Me" lanyard for students to where.  I'm hoping this will help out in my new classroom!

I created a circular graphic in PowerPoint, then printed them as a handout slide (2 to a page): 

Cut them out and glued them back to back:

Found a lanyard:

Sent them through my laminator and TADA!!! My finished product!!!

Click here to download the "Ask Me" file!  (This is my first attempt at a Google Docs on here.. cross your fingers it will work!!)

Sunday, July 14, 2013


Hey everyone! I decided to link up tonight and show you a little of what I've been working on all week!

After seeing a bunch of great sales for Christmas in July, I purchased a bunch of centers from Amy Lemons over at Step into 2nd Grade with Amy Lemons and Hope King from 2nd Grade Shenanigans!  They had some fabulous Math centers which I snagged, printed, and laminated with my new laminator!! (Can you tell I'm still super excited for it??)

Yup, that is a pile of 13 centers, already to go for my new second graders!!

I also took my girls to get pizza on Friday where they could make their own!  They had a blast!

I also got some great deals at Office Max today and last week!  You should check out their flyers for back to school goodies, cheap!!

OfficeMax - Click here to return to the home page.

Tomorrow I'm off to a 1/2 day curriculum planning with my new second grade team!  Yay! 

That is my Sunday Smorgasbord!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Favorite Friday Pins

I'm so excited to post today about my favorite pins from the week!  So I'm linking up with The First Grade Parade:

Here is one of my favorites! I can't wait to make this with my new second graders! (Sorry, couldn't find the original pinner)
Decoding Strategies

Another favorite, which I pinned myself, since I purchased it the day Nicole Shelby over at Teaching with Blonde Ambition put it on TPT and her blog!  I was waiting for her to make the 2nd grade one!  If you teach 2-5th grade, go and purchase it!!!!  She makes amazing products! I have bought so many when I taught fourth grade!!

Here is another:
Step into 2nd Grade with Mrs. Lemons: Addition and Subtraction with/without regrouping
I needed some centers and ideas for my first few math units and came across this and many more. Plus, Amy Lemons was having a sale this week for her Christmas in July on TPT! Score!!!

Figured I'd need to read this to my kiddos (Might have to go and buy it this week!):
A hilarious and engaging story that helps kids understand the difference between tattling and telling.

Here are some others:
How-to: Mounting TV to wall with no cords showing


Shadow box to collect your corks.

Those are just SOME of my favorites from the week!!! Now it is your turn to show you favorite pins from the week and link up!!! 

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Storing Centers

I'm posting today to ask how do you all store your centers?  Do you use ziploc bags, file folders, or envelopes?  I've used all of these but have never been happy with either, the happiest being envelopes but then you can't see what is in there.

I have been printing and laminating a bunch of centers to use this year in second grade and can't figure out how to store them.  I bought these pull out drawers for all of my math centers and will store them in there after figuring out how to really store them:

Any suggestions?

Monday, July 8, 2013

Monday Made it, not such a great one :(

Hey everyone! I didn't have much time to do any crafty projects this week.  If you are like me though, you have a really long list of what you want to do. I am sort of waiting to see what I really want to accomplish since I need to organize my new room and I did a lot of items last summer.

This week I worked on creating a lesson plan template and other quick tasks to get ready for teaching second grade!! I did make a 2nd grade Math flipbook to share with my team when we do curriculum work next week. I'm in the process of finishing the ELA one too.

I'm still not sure on the whole posting to TPT (only tried it twice) or how to link up to Google to download it. Or if people would actually use this.  Happy Monday everyone!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Made it Monday!

I'm so proud of myself for actually posting often, of course it is summer, so it is a lot easier.  Today I'm linking up with Tara from Fourth Grade Frolics for her Monday Made It!! I'm so excited that I actually got things done on my first week of vacation.

I finally got my personal laminator in the mail and printed a ton of things for my new 2nd grade classroom!  Here is the pile of lamination to be cut out (sorry the pic is a little blurry):

So my first project was printing and cutting out time pieces to go around my clock.  I got these from Ginger Snaps last year and didn't really need them since I taught fourth grade ELA only. 

My second project was cutting out organization labels for all of my supplies.  They currently just have sticky notes on the bins since I didn't know how to organize them.  I also have to adjust the shelves in my new room for all of the supplies since my bins don't find correctly.

Up next was my behavior clip it chart. I wanted to make this last summer, but my team was using a different management system.  I can't wait to spray my clips and get them ready for my new kiddos!  If you want this clip it chart head on over to TPT and visit A Cupcake for the Teacher for FREE! I just love it, even though it isn't just pink, green, and black like my classroom decor! It is too cute!

Then I edited and printed new labels for my seasonal/monthly bins. I didn't have bins and was always digging to find holiday materials or my calendar pieces so I bought some bins to house all of that. I was going to divide them into 4 bins since then it would be evenly stacked, but after starting, I decided I'll just go back and purchase another bin for May and June. 

My last project was a purchase from That's So Second Grade TPT store.  I wanted a new way to store all of my math games, activities etc and saw that she created these cute labels that can go on organizing drawers. So again I dragged my husband and kids to the store to buy 3 sets of drawers just for math! But everything should fit in those bins!! And if not, my plan is to put a chart in the bin to remind me where I stored the extra game that wouldn't fit.  Head over to That's So Second Grade on TPT to pick up your labels! 

So I think I was pretty productive for my first real Monday Made it Linky party!!! Hopefully I'll have something next week, but no guarantees since we'll be camping Wednesday through Saturday and then boating Sunday.  Can't wait to relax!